Shawn McKenzie
By Shawn McKenzie | SEM | March 27, 2017

Quality Score and tips on how to use it

A Quick Overview of Quality Scores

Last week’s topic was about Search term reports and today I’d like to cover quality scores (QS).  Google defines Quality Score as an estimate of the quality of your ads, keywords, and landing pages. In a nutshell, the more relevant your ads and landing pages are to the user, the more likely it is that you’ll see higher Quality Scores.  QS can be a valuable diagnostic tool that is a window into how Google sees your ad. 

The “Big Three” components that make up quality score are: ad relevance, expected CTR and landing page experience.

  • Let’s look at ad relevance first and some tips for improving quality score. Think about the intent of a user’s query and match the language in the ad text with that search query’s intent. Make sure the ad and its associated keywords are appropriate. Move extraneous keywords to another ad group so they are still used but in a more relevant ad. If needed, create a new ad for said keywords to keep ad relevance high and create a positive impact on your quality score.   
  • Expected CTR can be a measure of the ad copy’s quality. By creating more compelling ad text the user is expected to click more frequently. Highlight a unique benefit of your product or service. Experiment with different calls to action or simply be more specific in your ad text.
  • Sending traffic to a landing page that closely relates to the user’s query is a best practice to improve quality score.  Make sure the landing page continues the conversation started by your ad.  Landing page changes can be tricky, especially if you don’t control it. A best practice might be to write ads that correspond to the landing page instead of relying on landing page changes to meet the ad.

A final thought: quality scores are shown on a 1-10 scale but there is no upper limit.  A quality score of 10/10 is the highest value but further improving the user experience does pay dividends.  Your Quality Score will give you insight into how you’re performing, but “chasing the number” shouldn’t be the focus of your optimizations. Be relevant, be compelling and drive traffic to landing pages that deliver on what you promise in your ad, and you can feel confident your score should reflect that quality. 

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